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Coronavirus Update: Moderna expects the shortage of its updated COVID-19 booster to soon be resolved

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Moderna Inc.
MRNA,
-0.57%

said Wednesday that it expects to resolve supply issues for its new COVID-19 booster “in the coming days.”

Several media outlets reported this week that a shortage of Moderna’s updated booster was the result of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s ongoing inspection of a plant in Bloomington, Ind., that is operated by Catalent Inc.
CTLT,
-1.58%
.
Moderna and Catalent set up an agreement back in 2020 to manufacture Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccines.

The inspection has been completed, and the FDA on Tuesday allowed the 10 delayed batches of vaccine to ship, saying in a statement that “the agency has no concerns with the safety, effectiveness, or quality of these batches.”

“We continue to see high demand in certain areas of the country,” a Moderna spokesperson told MarketWatch in an email. “We anticipate that these availability constraints will be resolved in the coming days.” 

The company said it still plans to deliver 70 million doses of its bivalent COVID-19 booster by the end of the year. The updated booster — called a bivalent shot — protects against the original strain of the virus as well as the BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants of omicron. 

The U.S. government so far has shipped more than 25 million doses of the new shots, primarily the bivalent vaccine developed by BioNTech SE
BNTX,
-1.39%

and Pfizer Inc.
PFE,
-0.11%
,
according to Reuters

Other COVID-19 news to know:

Canada is expected to drop the COVID-19 vaccine requirement for people who enter Canada by the end of September, an official familiar with the matter told The Associated Press. Canada, like the U.S., has required foreign nationals to be vaccinated when entering the country. 

The daily average of new cases on Tuesday was 57,322 on Tuesday, according to a New York Times tracker. That’s down 24% from two weeks ago. The daily average of hospitalizations on Tuesday was 30,990, while the daily average number of deaths is 413. — Ciara Linnane

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